UAE partners with EY on STEM education app for female students

18 February 2022 3 min. read

In an effort to encourage young female Emiratis to pursue careers in STEM, the UAE government and EY have teamed up to launch a new educational app aimed at reaching 10,000 students.

Professional services firm Ernst & Young has partnered with the UAE government to provide online STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) training to 10,000 female public school students, with comprehensive six-month internships on offer for the ten best-performing participants.

The “building future talents” initiative forms part of the firm’s roll-out of its EY STEM app to seven countries around the world.

Building Future Talents EY

“We are proud to collaborate with the UAE government to expand the scope of one of our community initiatives and share expertise with the next generation, especially in the fields of technology and digitisation,” commented EY MENA Chairman and CEO Abdulaziz Al-Sowailim. “We believe that the greatest positive impact on our economies is guaranteed by empowering youth to become future business leaders.”

With its educational content provided by leading institutions including NASA, the University of Pennsylvania, UC Berkeley and UNESCO, the app features more than 450 activities on topics such as emerging technologies, robotics and automation, blockchain, and the future of space, along with personal development material designed to enhance creativity, innovative thinking, and effective communication among other soft skills.

“Launching the app to build future skills for female public school students in the UAE will upskill female students in the most vital future fields by providing advanced scientific and technical content; given their important and pivotal role in shaping the future,” said Jameela bint Salem Al Muhairi, Minister of Public Education and Chairperson of the Emirates Schools Establishment, the UAE’s public education agency which is partnering on the initiative.

The app also leverages gamification and incentivised learning with points and rewards earned on the completion of individual tasks, including prizes, virtual mentorships, and training opportunities with EY experts. Participants will also be given the opportunity to redeem their points as donations to support the humanitarian programmes of the Emirates Red Crescent and the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI).

The UAE joins the UK, Ireland, Canada, Philippines, Australia and New Zealand as countries selected for the EY STEM app roll-out over the course of this year, following a successful pilot in the US and India which included over 7,000 teenage participants. According to the pilot study, an average of at least 30 percent improvement was achieved across four measures, including interest and competence in STEM and the perception of its value.

“Advancing girls’ skills and interests in STEM is vital to closing the gender gap,” said Julie Linn Teigland, EY EMEIA Area Managing Partner. It’s crucial that women and girls have the opportunity to realise their full potential as leaders and change-makers in a world increasingly enabled by technology. We’re proud of the success the EY STEM App has had so far and rolling the app out to more countries is an important step forward.”